US regulators join investigation of fatal CF ammonia leak

17 November 2009 17:15  [Source: ICIS news]

HOUSTON (ICIS news)--Investigators from the US Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) on Tuesday began investigating a release of ammonia at a CF Industries terminal in Minnesota, which caused the death of one truck driver and critically injured another.

Illinois-based fertilizer maker CF earlier confirmed a fatal release of anhydrous ammonia on Monday at about 18:00 hours Houston time (0:00 GMT) at its terminal in Pine Bend, Minnesota.

The two injured truck drivers, both believed to be from Oklahoma, were apparently loading ammonia when a hose may have become detached or ruptured, sources said.

One of the drivers was dead on the scene, and the other was flown by medical helicopter to a local hospital.

Neither driver was an employee of CF, said company spokesman Terry Huch.

The ammonia line that leaked was shut down immediately and did not cause any danger to the local community.

CF was conducting an investigation into the accident and cooperating with local officials, the company said.

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By: Frank Zaworski
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